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Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart’s ‘Central Intelligence’ to Open 2016 American Black Film Festival

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NEW YORK, New York (FNN NEWS) – The new action comedy Central Intelligence, from director Rawson Marshall Thurber (We’re the Millers, Dodgeball) will screen on opening night of the 20th American Black Film Festival on Wednesday, June 15, at the Olympia Theater, 174 East Flagler Street, Miami. The opening night film is presented by the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA), courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures, in advance of its nationwide release.

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2016 American Black Film Festival To Open With “Central Intelligence” Starring Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart

Starring Dwayne Johnson (San Andreas, Hercules, Furious 7) and Kevin Hart, (Ride Along, The Wedding Ringer, Get Hard), Central Intelligence follows a one-time bullied geek, Bob (Johnson), who grew up to be a lethal CIA agent, coming home for his high school reunion. Claiming to be on a top-secret case, Bob enlists the help of former “big man on campus,” Calvin (Hart), now an accountant who misses his glory days. But before the staid numbers-cruncher realizes what he’s getting into, it’s too late to get out, as his increasingly unpredictable new friend drags him through a world of shoot-outs, double-crosses and espionage that could get them both killed in more ways than Calvin can count.

A New Line Cinema and Universal Pictures presentation distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures, Central Intelligence also stars Oscar-nominee Amy Ryan (Gone Baby Gone), Aaron Paul (TV’s Breaking Bad), and Danielle Nicolet (TV’s The Game, Born Again Virgin) and will open in theaters June 17.

“The MPAA is thrilled to sponsor the American Black Film Festival for the fourth year in a row and the Opening Night film for the second year. We are pleased to partner with one of our member studios, Warner Bros., to bring their new film, “Central Intelligence,” starring Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart, to the festival audience. I want to commend my good friend, Jeff Friday, and everyone at the American Black Film Festival for the amazing job they have done over the past 20 years. MPAA’s ongoing partnership with the ABFF underscores my belief that our industry is best served when we present a wide array of diverse stories,” said Senator Chris Dodd, Chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America.

ABFF FIRST LOOK is a new signature panel event at the ABFF, and will give festival attendees an inside look into two of the Fall’s most talked about films: The Birth of a Nation and Almost Christmas.

Source: Sundance/ABFF

Source: Sundance/ABFF

THE BIRTH OF A NATION, presented by MPAA, courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures, will include an enlightening conversation with The Birth of a Nation filmmaker and actor Nate Parker (Beyond the Lights, Red Tails), along with actress Aja Naomi King (How To Get Away with Murder) and actress Gabrielle Union (Being Mary Jane, Bad Boys II). They will showcase behind-the-scenes clips on the making of the film, as well as discuss the film’s incredible journey to date. The panel will take place on Friday, June 17 at 11:00 a.m. at the Ritz Carlton Miami.

Set against the antebellum South, THE BIRTH OF A NATION follows Nat Turner (Nate Parker), a literate slave and preacher, whose financially strained owner, Samuel Turner (Armie Hammer), accepts an offer to use Nat’s preaching to subdue unruly slaves. As he witnesses countless atrocities – against himself and his fellow slaves – Nat orchestrates an uprising in the hopes of leading his people to freedom. The film opens in theaters October 7.

“Senator Dodd and the MPAA team have been wonderful partners over the past four years and have proven their commitment to supporting diversity in the motion picture industry,” says ABFF Founder Jeff Friday. “We are excited about their expanded footprint at this year’s festival including hosting our opening night film and inaugural ABFF First Look panel series.”

THE MAKING OF ALMOST CHRISTMAS, sponsored by Comcast NBCU, courtesy of Universal Pictures, an MPAA studio, will bring the ABFF audience a first-look at Universal’s new comedy from writer/director/executive producer David E. Talbert (Baggage Claim) and producer Will Packer (Ride Along, Think Like a Man series, This Christmas). The all-star cast is led by Kimberly Elise, Danny Glover, John Michael Higgins, Romany Malco, Mo’Nique, JB Smoove, Gabrielle Union, Omar Epps, Nicole Ari Parker, Jessie Usher and DC Young Fly.

Almost Christmas tells the festive story of a beloved patriarch who asks his family for one gift this holiday season: to get along. If they can honor that wish and spend five days under the same roof without killing one another, it will be a Christmas miracle.

Talbert, Packer and Union (who also executive produces the comedy) will participate in a panel discussion for festivalgoers about the making of Almost Christmas on Friday, June 17 at 2:00 p.m. at the Ritz Carlton Miami. The panel will be moderated by Buzzfeed Pop Culture Editor, Sylvia Obell.

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Florida House Democratic Leader-Designate Fentrice Driskell Announces Leadership Team

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida House Democratic Leader-Designate Fentrice Driskell (D-Tampa) today announced the appointment of the following Democratic Representatives to serve on the House Democratic Caucus leadership team for the 2022-24 legislative term:

  • Leader Pro Tempore: Representative Dotie Joseph (D-Miami);
  • Policy Chair: Representative Kelly Skidmore (D-Boca Raton);
  • Floor Leader: Representative Michael “Mike” Gottlieb (D-Davie); and
  • Whip: Representative Christine Hunschofsky (D-Parkland).

“The House Democratic Caucus is made up of some of the strongest, most fierce champions of the people in the entire state,” said Leader-Designate Driskell. “It is an honor and great pleasure to work with these individuals in this new capacity, and all of them are prepared to lead the Caucus in the face of the challenges that lie ahead of us.”

As Leader Pro Tempore, Representative Joseph will assist the Democratic Leader in carrying out designated responsibilities and perform such Leadership responsibilities as are assigned, including stepping in for the Leader as needed.

“I have had the distinct pleasure of knowing Representative Joseph for over 20 years. From the time we were at Georgetown Law to now, she has always been a consistent champion for justice. The issues she advocates for on behalf of all Floridians makes Representative Joseph an invaluable asset in defending Floridians against extremist Republican policies,” said Leader-Designate Driskell. “I look forward to Representative Joseph’s leadership as a key member of my team over the next two years.”

In her role as the Caucus Policy Chair, Representative Skidmore will be responsible for ensuring the Caucus continues to champion legislation that positively impacts all Floridians, and will lead discussions about bills before the House at Caucus meetings.

“As the previous Policy Chair for the Caucus, I know what is needed to do this job. Appointing Representative Skidmore as Policy Chair was an easy choice,” said Leader-Designate Driskell. “She stood out as a prime member in understanding policy during the last legislative term. Representative Skidmore also brings with her a wealth of experience as both a former House and Senate staffer and House member. Applying her unique skillset to this new role will benefit the Caucus and all Floridians.”

In his role as Floor Leader, Representative Gottlieb will be responsible in interpreting the House Rules, ensuring the Caucus adheres to the agreed upon rules, and working with his Republican counterpart in advocating for fair amounts of time be allotted to the Caucus in debating different pieces of legislation.

“Two things I greatly appreciate about Representative Gottlieb are his refreshing candor and strong fortitude,” said Leader-Designate Driskell. “As the minority party in the Legislature, we’re aware of the challenges that lie ahead of us. What we need right now is someone who is unwavering under extreme pressure to help guide our Caucus during difficult moments. Representative Gottlieb is perfectly suited for this role.”

As Whip, Representative Hunschofsky will be responsible for keeping all Democratic Caucus members apprised of Caucus policy on any bills or issues before the House.

Representative Hunschofsky has an amazing ability to get things done,” said Leader-Designate Driskell. “Not only does Representative Hunschofsky possess a wealth of knowledge due to her experience as the former mayor of Parkland, Florida, she is also a champion of many initiatives close to Floridians’ hearts, such as expanding access to quality mental health care. I know Representative Hunschofsky’s knowledge and ability will help prepare our Caucus for the challenges of the next two year.”

The Florida House Democratic Caucus will convene during Organizational Session taking place Nov. 21-22, 2022 in advance of the 2023 Legislative Session scheduled to begin on March 7, 2023.

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VIDEO: State Rep. Dianne Hart elected chair of the Florida Legislative Black Caucus

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ORLANDO, Fla. (FNN) – State Representative Dianne Hart (D-Tampa), incoming Chair of the Florida Legislative Black Caucus, talks briefly with Florida National News on the importance of the Florida Blue Florida Classic at Camping World Stadium in Orlando Saturday. The Florida Classic is an annual college football rivalry game between Bethune–Cookman University and Florida A&M University.

Hart’s Twitter Statement:

Hart’s statement: “I’m honored to have been elected as the Chair of the Florida Legislative Black Caucus.” “I’m grateful to my colleagues for their support and for trusting me to move this important caucus forward.”

During the 2021 and 2022 Legislative Sessions, Rep. Hart served on the following House committees, including Democratic Ranking Member of the Infrastructure and Tourism Appropriations Subcommittee, Judiciary Committee, Joint Committee on Public Counsel Oversight, Ways & Means Committee, Criminal Justice & Public Safety Subcommittee, State Legislative Redistricting Subcommittee and Select Subcommittee on Authorized Gaming Activity.

Hart was first elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 2018. She is also the CEO of the East Tampa Business and Civic Association.

 

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Former State Rep. Bruce Antone Ready To Rejoin Florida House

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Former State Representative Bruce Antone respond to questions by CFABJ, NAACP, and the Florida Voters League panel during a candidates forum in Orange County, Thursday, October 19, 2022. (Photo by J Willie David, III / Florida National News)

ORLANDO, Fla. (FNN) – Former Florida State Representative Bruce Antone served 12 years (six terms) in the Florida House of Representatives and defeated incumbent Democratic Rep. Travaris McCurdy during the August primary election to represent Orange County in the newly draw District 41 House seat.

CFABJ, NAACP, and Florida Voters League held a candidates forum for candidates seeking county, state and Congressional seats in Orange County, Thursday, October 19, 2022. (Photo by J Willie David, III / Florida National News)

CFABJ, NAACP, and Florida Voters League held a candidates forum for candidates seeking county, state and Congressional seats in Orange County, Thursday, October 19, 2022. (Photo by J Willie David, III / Florida National News)

Antone was among eleven candidates seeking election to county, state and Congressional seats participating in a candidate forum hosted by CFABJ, NAACP and the Florida Voters League, Wednesday, October 19, 2022.

Green Party nominee Robin Denise Harris is the only potential road block in Antone’s return to Tallahassee and faces off with him in the November general election. The District 41 House seat has an overwhelmingly Democratic voter base.

During his time in the Florida House, Antone was elected by his colleagues to serve as the Chairman of the 29-member Florida Legislative Black Caucus.

The general election is Tuesday, November 8, 2022.

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